Just all of a suddenly when I plug in my USB drive to my personal computer, all the files and folders became shortcuts. Each time I double-click the folder, it turned into a shortcut showing about 1KB or 2KB etc. Also more strangely it came up with a message “Windows cannot find F:\RECYCLER\DSCI2345.jpg”. I really have no idea what’s going on out there. Do I have chance to fix the folder shortcuts problem and recover my files back cause I have so many previous photos and documents insides my USB key.
It is obviously that your USB flash drive has infected with certain kind of virus or Trojans. Such infection usually results in the folder shortcuts problem in the drive, try taking the following steps to get it fixed. It should help you out.
- STEP 1: Please check if files or folders in your USB flash are in hidden mode. I assume you are running a computer with Windows XP.
Click on “Start” –>Run –> type ‘cmd’ and click OK.
Then enter this command (note: the letter f represents your USB flash drive)
attrib -h -r -s /s /d f:\*.*
- STEP 2: Use anti-virus to kill the virus or Trojans. Free download Defender Pro Antivirus and install it on your computer. Then connect your USB. Open the anti-virus and make a full scan of the flash drive in order to clean the virus. It should make the folders become normal again.
Still won’t help?
Now you’ll have to reformat your USB key, but before you do, see if you can rely on a data recovery software program to recover the files as many as possible. Then re-format the USB under “My Computer” by right clicking your drive and choose format option. After the format, use the recovery program again to see if you can recover more files as format won’t erase the files immediately until they are overwritten.
Also check out:
- how to format USB drive
- recover data from formatted USB disk
- fix folders become shortcuts
- recover deleted folder from USB drive